TIRUVALLA: An elderly woman, belonging to the Scheduled Caste, was cremated on the public road at Keezhcerimel near here on Saturday for want of proper crematorium facilities. Kuttiyamma, 82, of Kuravanparampil, died on Friday. Since she was living in a small house in half-a-cent of land, the cremation and funeral rituals were conducted on the road in a specially arranged metal box. Her son, Shasi who died three years ago, was also cremated on the road, relatives said.
These special metal boxes are used in Kuttanad and Upper Kuttanad areas during monsoon for cremation. Lack of proper crematorium in the municipality is affecting people, said municipal chairman John Mulankattil. “The municipal council had tried to construct a crematorium by allocating some money in the municipal budget. We were not able to find a piece of land without inviting the ire of local residents,” he added.
Locals have found a way out of the situation. “Some give away the body to medical colleges. Some were cremated inside the houses. Some others converted to Christianity to use the church’s cemetery,” said Gopakumar, a local resident. A gas crematorium started at Cheriyanad panchayat, has gone kaput due to poor maintenance.